Creative degrees in France, Spain and Italy

Europe / Guides

Studying for a bachelor’s degree in a creative subject, such as art, design, or fashion, in Southern Europe offers a unique and inspiring educational experience. Here are several compelling reasons why students might consider embarking on this journey:

Why study a creative degree in Southern Europe?

1. Cultural Richness: Southern Europe, encompassing countries like Spain, Italy, and France, is renowned for its rich cultural heritage and artistic traditions. Choosing to study in this region provides students with an opportunity to immerse themselves in a vibrant and historically significant environment where creativity is celebrated daily.

2. Inspiring Landscapes: The natural beauty and diverse landscapes of Southern Europe serve as a wellspring of inspiration for creative minds. From the sun-soaked coastlines to the historic cityscapes, the region offers a multitude of visual and cultural stimuli for students pursuing creative degrees.

3. Multilingual Advantage: Many universities in Southern Europe offer creative programs taught in English, making them accessible to international students. This opens doors for aspiring artists and designers from around the world to learn and work in a global environment while acquiring valuable language skills.

4. World-Class Institutions: Southern Europe boasts world-class educational institutions specializing in creative subjects. These universities collaborate with renowned professionals, offering students the opportunity to learn from the best in the field.

5. Career Opportunities: Graduates of creative programmes in Southern Europe can tap into the thriving creative industries within the region. Cities like Barcelona, Milan, and Florence are hubs for art, design, and fashion, offering countless internship and job opportunities upon graduation.

The Creative Industries in Southern Europe

The creative industries play a significant role in the economies of Southern European countries, contributing to innovation, cultural heritage, and job creation. Here’s how these sectors impact the economies of Spain, Italy, and France:


  • Spain’s creative industries, including architecture, fashion, and design, contribute approximately 3.6% to the country’s GDP.
  • Iconic Spanish fashion brands like Zara have global recognition, showcasing the country’s influence in the fashion industry.
  • The architecture and interior design sectors thrive on a rich history of creativity, with Spanish architects renowned for their innovative designs and contributions to the built environment.


  • Italy is celebrated for its design excellence, with Milan being a global fashion and design capital.
  • The Italian creative sector, with its emphasis on luxury fashion, design, and artisanal craftsmanship, contributes around 2.8% to the country’s GDP.
  • The creative industries provide employment to a substantial portion of the population, sustaining the nation’s cultural heritage and economic development.


  • France is a global powerhouse in the luxury fashion industry, with iconic brands like Chanel and Louis Vuitton.
  • The French creative industries, including fashion, art, and design, make up approximately 4.4% of the nation’s GDP.
  • Paris, often dubbed the fashion capital of the world, is home to numerous designers, artists, and creators contributing to the country’s cultural and economic landscape.

Leading Creative Universities in Southern Europe

If you’re considering a creative degree in Southern Europe, here are two sentence overviews of five esteemed universities in the region:

  1. IED Milan: Istituto Europeo di Design in Milan is renowned for its creative programmes in fashion, design, and visual communication. Located in the heart of Milan, students benefit from the city’s influential fashion and design scene, making it a prime destination for aspiring creative professionals.
  2. Polimoda Florence: Polimoda, based in the picturesque city of Florence, Italy, is a global leader in fashion education. With a diverse range of courses in fashion design, marketing, and management, Polimoda offers students a comprehensive and immersive learning experience.
  3. Institute of the Arts Barcelona: Situated in the vibrant city of Barcelona, the Institute of the Arts Barcelona provides a dynamic environment for budding artists and performers. Offering programs in performing arts, music, and fine arts, this institution nurtures creative talent with a Mediterranean twist.
  4. NABA Milan: Nuova Accademia di Belle Arti, located in Milan, offers various creative programmes, including design, media arts, and fashion. NABA is known for its innovative approach to education and commitment to preparing students for success in the global creative industry.
  5. Parsons Paris: The European campus of The New School’s Parsons School of Design, located in the artistic heart of Paris, offers an array of design programs. Parsons Paris is renowned for its emphasis on creativity, critical thinking, and global perspectives, making it an excellent choice for aspiring designers and artists.

Pursuing a creative degree in Southern Europe, with its rich cultural heritage, inspirational landscapes, and flourishing creative industries, can offer an exciting and rewarding educational experience. The region’s top universities provide students with world-class education, setting the stage for successful careers in the ever-evolving creative fields.